Free Activities

Activity: How to Reach Your Dream Life

Posted by on Oct 8, 2013 in Cognitive Therapy, Free Activities | 0 comments

Activity: How to Reach Your Dream Life

Get your FREE pdf version of this activity here: How to Reach Your Dream Life How to Reach your Dream Life Ever find you’re just “going with the flow” in life? Are you spending your time striving for what society labels “a normal life”? Do you have a different life you’d like to be living? YES, YES, and YES!   It’s easy to get caught up in the rat race of life, striving for the norms of society. If you never stop to think about what you actually want in life, odds are you’ll continue doing this your whole life. When I continuously “go with the flow” and do what I think I’m supposed to be doing, I get down in the dumps. I feel a deep disconnect within me, and a nagging feeling that I should be doing other things with my time. The truth is, I’m not following my dreams! It’s important to define your dreams. This takes time and journaling is an excellent way to sort out your true desires. Do the activity on the following page to help define what you want in life. After that, we’ll outline what needs to happen to slowly start reaching your ideal life.    My Dream Life 1. What hobbies do I truly enjoy doing? _________________________________________________________   2. If money were not an issue, what would my work consist of? _________________________________________________________   3. What would I be thrilled about to contribute to the world? (What kind of work would you thoroughly enjoy providing to others?) _________________________________________________________   4. Where would I enjoy living? _________________________________________________________   5. What kind of people would I like to spend my time around? _________________________________________________________   6. What do I value in life? _________________________________________________________   7. What are some things I’m wasting my time on right now? _________________________________________________________   8. Who are some people that I currently hang out with that are not in line with my true path? __________________________________________________________     Moving Towards your Dream Life             If your dream life is different than the life you are living, arriving at your dream life requires CHANGE. Change takes time and effort. The key to reaching your dream life is to be patient, be committed, and have faith. Know that changing your life takes time and persistence, know that you must be committed and stick to the changes to see results and lastly, have faith that you have the ability to reach your dream life. Change requires incorporating new activities into your day-to-day life and dropping activities that are not serving you. Complete the activity below to obtain guidance on moving towards your dream life.   Three Activities I Can Eliminate (Activities you’re doing that do not serve you in reaching your dreams): 1. ___________________________________________________ 2. ___________________________________________________ 3. ___________________________________________________   Three Activities I Can Add In: (The key to choosing appropriate activities, is to choose things you can do in less than one hour that would contribute to moving towards your dreams) 1. ____________________________________________________ 2. ____________________________________________________ 3. ____________________________________________________   EXAMPLES  Activities I Can Eliminate (Activities you’re doing that do not serve you in reaching your dreams): I can eliminate drinking with friends 1 night per week to give me extra time for my own things. I can eliminate hanging out with my boyfriend/girlfriend 1 night per week to give myself extra time for my own things. Time lost on Facebook, gossip sites, videogames, watching TV After dinner snacking Time lost with friends that bring you down/don’t contribute to your visions   Activities I Can Add (The key to choosing appropriate activities, is to choose things you...

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Activity: Increasing Happiness Each Day

Posted by on Oct 8, 2013 in Cognitive Therapy, Free Activities, Mindfulness & Meditation | 0 comments

Activity: Increasing Happiness Each Day

Get your FREE pdf version of this activity: Increasing Happiness Each Day Increasing Happiness Each Day Sonja Lyubomirsky, a professor at California University studying the science of happiness and author of ‘The How of Happiness’, states that science has shown there to be two components to happiness. The first component is having a sense that your life is good; generally, being satisfied with how your life is going. The second component is the emotions you feel on a day-to-day basis, that being, do you experience more positive emotions or more negative emotions each day? I was particularly drawn to the second component of happiness because while humans do inevitably experience suffering and negative emotions, how we choose to perceive circumstances is largely in our control. If we consistently practice turning suffering and negative emotions into positive situations and learning experiences, we can increase the amount of positive emotions we are feeling each day. I also feel that people tend to forget or ignore the positive aspects of their lives and their day-to-day routines. Simply taking time to list the positive aspects of your day can increase the amount of positive emotions, contributing to greater happiness in life. Increasing happiness in your life takes effort and action. You must commit to new daily habits to see lasting results. To assist in increasing positive emotions try completing the activity on the following page daily or 3x/week. Good luck! Shawna Thibodeau    Increasing Positive Emotions Part A: Switching Negative Emotions to Positive Emotions “The primary cause of unhappiness is never the situation but your thoughts about the situation.” ~ Eckhart Tolle List 2 things you are viewing negatively today: _____________________________________________ _____________________________________________ Describe how you can view these situations differently (What can this situation teach you? What are you gaining from this struggle? How are you strengthening & improving by experiencing this?) ________________________________________________ ________________________________________________   Part B: Being Present for Positive Emotions “The miracle of gratitude is that it shifts your perception to such an extent that it changes the world you see.” – Dr. Robert Holden List 5 things that are positive in your life today (What are you grateful for? What is going well for you? What can you/did you enjoy today? What have you done well?) ________________________________________ ________________________________________ ________________________________________ ________________________________________...

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Activity: Tackling Your Inner Critic to Have Skyrocket Confidence

Posted by on Oct 8, 2013 in Cognitive Therapy, Free Activities | 0 comments

Activity: Tackling Your Inner Critic to Have Skyrocket Confidence

Get your FREE pdf version of this activity: Tackling Your Inner Critic to Have Skyrocket Confidence Tackling Your Inner Critic to Have Skyrocket Confidence For an intro into understanding your inner critic, read my article ‘Toning Down your Inner Critic’. Why do we give our inner critic so much power? Why do we believe him/her to the extent that it ruins our day leaving us angry, sad and ashamed? It’s time to gain power over your inner critic. In an article by Amy Ahlers, author of Big Fat Lies Women Tell Themselves: Ditch Your Inner Critic and Wake Up Your Inner Superstar, she offers strategies to toning down your inner critic. One strategy she mentions is to “Draw, doodle, or sketch a picture of Your Inner Critic”.  Amy describes that the key to this activity is to make your inner critic look pathetic. You can either make your inner critic a sad image that makes you feel sorry for them or, a hilarious image that just makes you laugh at them. Either of these will help you gain power over your inner critic by showing you that you’re actually better off and can dismiss their negative opinions.  My Examples Example A: A Sketch you Feel Sorry For Draw your inner critic to be overweight, wearing glasses and cheap clothing, with unfortunate skin and visible scars. They could look like they’re from an unfortunate side of town, having been through a lot and not having many close supports. By feeling sorry for your inner critic you realize that he/she puts you down to try to feel better about himself/herself. What they actually need is comfort, support and understanding. This will help you take your inner critic softly, without much credit, and befriend them so that slowly the negative criticisms diminish. Show your unfortunate inner critic the way to positive self-talk. You need to be their teacher.   Example B: A Sketch you Find Hilarious Draw your inner critic in their underwear with wacky hair and a big potbelly. Make him/her have a pet pig, Wait, a what?! Yes, a pet pig. Or a harmonica, suspenders, a tractor. Just make him/her ridiculous. Every time you visualize your inner critic saying negative things about you, you’ll just have to laugh. When you hear yourself having negative self-talk, visualize your hilarious inner critic and say “YA, okayyy buddy, what do you know?!”. Having a hilarious inner critic will allow you to not validate what they are saying. You can’t possibly believe their opinions to be true. You know that your own opinions have much more credit, and these you have power over to make them positive. Give it a go! Draw your inner critic on the following page! Cheers, Shawna   DRAW YOUR INNER CRITIC BELOW by making them either unfortunate and someone to feel sorry for OR, hilarious and someone to simply laugh at. My Inner Critic’s Name is _______________ and this is what they look like:              ...

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Activity: How to Accomplish Goals and Love Your Life

Posted by on Oct 8, 2013 in Cognitive Therapy, Free Activities | 6 comments

Activity: How to Accomplish Goals and Love Your Life

Grab your FREE pdf version of this activity here: How to Accomplish Goals and Love Your Life   How to Accomplish Goals and Love Your Life 1)   Create long-term goals that would be in line with your most desirable life. For example: creating a blog based on a passionate hobby, starting a business, eating a healthier diet, becoming a regular yogi/meditator, changing careers, saving money, write a book. 2)   For each long-term goal, write action steps that must be accomplished to move towards reaching the goals. Each activity should take NO MORE THAN 1 HOUR to complete and you should start with listing the very first action step that is required. For example: research competing businesses, sign up for a blog, make a healthy grocery list, learn about meditation, create a budget. 3)   From here, commit a small portion of your day to completing the required action steps. 4)   Be proud of the ‘seeds you are planting’ for your dream life each and every day.   Long-term Goal 1 Hour Actions to Complete this Goal 1. 2. 3. 4.   1. 2. 3. 4.  ...

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Activity: Turning Stressors into Challenges

Posted by on Oct 8, 2013 in Cognitive Therapy, Free Activities | 0 comments

Activity: Turning Stressors into Challenges

DOWNLOAD THE PDF VERSION OF THIS ACTIVITY: Turning Stressors into Challenges Turning Stressors into Challenges “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” ~ Wayne Dyer To move towards goals you must implement some sort of change. Implementing change requires work. That is a basic formula. Work can also be called challenges. You must overcome one challenge after another to move towards your goals. With a poor mindset however, one can view these challenges as stressors. Further, if you have no vision of your goals, you end up trying to conquer challenges that actually have no meaning to you. This leads to an overburdening of challenges, which leads to stress. Do this quick activity on the next page to discover if your stressors are leading you to a place of meaning. If they are, lets work on changing your perspective so these stressors become meaningful challenges. For an example of the activity, scroll to the bottom.   Step 1: Does this goal align with your future visions? I am stressed about: _____________________________ Would accomplishing this/having this put me closer to my goals/visions for the future:  YES / NO If you answered YES, the steps to accomplishing this may be worth your time since you believe it will contribute to your goals and future visions. If you answered NO, you may want to consider letting this go from your life. You may be stressed about the steps because accomplishing that goal or having the outcome actually holds no true meaning to you.   Step 2: Changing your view on challenges If accomplishing your stressors would contribute to your future visions, let’s change your perspective on these obstacles. You are saying: I am stressed about… ____________________________ Instead say: Doing this (________________________________________) will positively contribute to my future visions. I genuinely want ________________________________ in my life. The first tiny step (will take less than 1 hour) to move towards accomplishing this goal is ___________________________________________________ This first step is manageable and it is all that I need to accomplish right now. Goals require accomplishing challenges. The above first step is my first challenge and I can totally get that done!   ACTIVITY EXAMPLE   Step 1: Does this goal align with your future visions? I am stressed about: Studying for my final 3 exams to pass second year of nursing school. Would accomplishing this/having this put me closer to my goals/visions for the future:  YES / NO If you answered YES, the steps to accomplishing this may be worth your time since you believe it will contribute to your goals and future visions. If you answered NO, you may want to consider letting this go from your life. You may be stressed about the steps because accomplishing that goal or having the outcome actually holds no true meaning to you.   Step 2: Changing your view on challenges If accomplishing your stressors would contribute to your future visions, let’s change your perspective on these obstacles. You are saying: I am stressed about… Studying for my final 3 exams to pass second year of nursing school. Instead say: Doing this (passing second year of nursing school) will positively contribute to my future visions. I genuinely want to pass nursing school and become a nurse in my life. The first tiny step (will take less than 1 hour) to move towards accomplishing this goal is Studying lecture 3 of pharmacology This first step is manageable and it is all that I need to accomplish right now. Goals require accomplishing challenges. The above first step is my first challenge and...

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Activity: Change Your Perspective to Rock Your Life

Posted by on Sep 15, 2013 in Cognitive Therapy, Free Activities, Mindfulness & Meditation | 0 comments

Activity: Change Your Perspective to Rock Your Life

Grab your FREE pdf version here: Change Your Perspective to Rock Your Life “Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not a truth.” – Marcus Aurelius Change Your Perspective to Rock Your Life Are you stressed, nervous, and over-thinking a situation? Are you catastrophizing the situation thinking, “What if I mess up?” “What if they don’t like me?” “What if this doesn’t work out?”  If so, you need to change your perspective to have a less stressed and more enjoyable experience! Try the activity below to take on new, positive perspectives. If you need help getting started, check out my real life examples on the following pages. 1)   In 3 of the boxes below write out 3 different negative perspectives you are having about your situation. 2)   Now, for each negative perspective, change your thinking around into a more positive, beneficial, “what-can-I-gain-from-this” viewpoint. Write out the opposite perspectives in the other 3 boxes. 3)   Highlight the new, positive perspectives. 4)   Choose to think the positive perspectives you have highlighted. Commit to having the highlighted perspectives as your primary thoughts. 5)   Repeat these perspectives over and over. Whenever you have a negative perspective, exchange it for one of the new highlighted perspectives. Remember, the highlighted perspectives are now your perspectives! 6)   Hang this on your wall or put it in your bag/purse so you can see it and practice it often.         Check out my real-life examples!   1)   I was incredibly nervous for a job interview making me almost not want to show up. I needed to change my perspective!   I hate talking to people of authority, I’m going to choke up and not be able to answer questions. I’m going to this interview to gain experience in talking to people of authority. Even if I don’t get it, it’s good practice. I’m not qualified enough for this job, they’re going to think I’m stupid for applying. Even if I’m not qualified, I’m going to be myself during the interview and have a good time expressing my true self to another person. I have no real life skills, how can I ever get a job? I definitely have some skills. I’ll show them the skills I have and if they’re not enough I’ll continue building more skills to further my abilities.   2)   I was nervous to go on a date, making it completely un-enjoyable. I needed to change my perspective!   They’re not going to like me. This is going to go nowhere. All I can do is be myself. This isn’t make it or break it, it’s just hanging out with another person to have some fun. There’s going to be awkward pauses, this date is going to be brutal. There may be awkward pauses but he’s probably nervous too. Just calmly start a new topic. I don’t look pretty/fun/outgoing/slim enough. I’m not interesting/talented/adventurous enough. You are who you are (which is awesome!) if they don’t like it then they’re not the one anyways.   3)   I was super stressed about a presentation I had to give. I needed to change my perspective!   I hate talking to an audience; I’m going to mess up. I’m going to practice talking to an audience. If I mess up, it’s ok, I just have to keep trying. People are going to judge me. Everyone judges everyone, it’s natural for human beings. Their judgments however, have no effect on me and in reality they don’t matter at all. My face is going to go red. This will be so...

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